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Star Trails 


build, hack, tweak, share, discover,^ 

Star Trails 

Written By: Sergio 




Breadboard (1) 


Arduino or clone (1) 

• Soldering iron (1) 


NPN Transistor m 


Resistor (1) 


Hook-up wire (1) 


Relay (1) 


DSLR camera (1) 


IR remote control for your camera (1) 


Tripod M^ 


Star trails are the paths left by stars as seen from the earth. As the earth spins, the stars 
appear to move and circle in the sky. 

To capture the star trails you need a camera, a tripod and an automated trigger for your 
camera. The Arduino, a relay and the camera's remote control will create the automated 

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Page 1 of 3 

Star Trails 

Step 1 — Star Trails 

• Fritzing schematic. 

• The system is powered by 12 volts. The transistor turns the relay on when pin 2 is set to 

• This fires the IR remote control that triggers the DSLR. 

Step 2 


Turns on Pino 2, every SO sees. 

Connect the relay directly if its a Svolt relay or throught a 
npn transistor if is a 12 volt relay. 
12 volts — > Belay — > Collector — Eumiter — >GHD 

Ba3e — > Resistor — > Arduino pino 2 
int Relay=2; 
void setup () { 

// initialize the digital pin as an output. 
// Pin 13 has an LED connected on most Aidumo boards: 
pinHode (Relay, OUTPUT); 

void looj){) ;^ 

digitaltlrite (Relay, LOU); // set the LED on 
delay (60000] i II wait Eor a second 

digitaltJrite (Relay, HIGH); // set the LED off 
delay (100); // wait for a second 

• The Arduino code can't be more 
simple. Just decide the time 
between photos and put that time 
after the command that sets pin 2 

• Remember that your DLSR must 
have time to take and process the 
photos. If you set your camera to a 
10-second exposure you must 
have 25 to 200 seconds delay 
between exposures. 

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Page 2 of 3 

Star Trails 

Step 3 

• Peel back the adhesive paper on top of the DLSR remote control and solder two wires to 
the two pads under the button. 

• Place the adhesive paper back in place. 

• Connect the two wires to the contacts of your relay. 

Step 4 

^ i^> startrails-dcHtml/software.litml 

£% Startrails english 


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• Finally, go to or . There you 
can download the software which 
will merge your individual photos 
together and create star trail 
photos like this one. 

This document was last generated on 2012-11-03 01 :56:45 AM. 

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